Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Arsenic and Old Face

Robert Muscutt's great-great-grandmother Mary Ball was the last woman executed in Coventry. Whenever he wants to see her face, he has only to visit the Little Park Street Police Station's "Black Museum."

As he signed copies of his book, A Life for a Life: The Real Story of Mary Ball, in the Coventry police museum, he looked up at the death mask of his relative and said: "My feeling is that she should be more pitied that pilloried.
Mary's only crime was to buy a "penny-worth" of arsenic three months before her husband's death to "kill bugs."
Instead, she put the poison on a shelf at her home in Back Lane, Nuneaton.

When Thomas returned from a fishing trip complaining of feeling ill, Mary casually suggested he took the "salts" on the shelf as they would do him good. [Link]

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